Saturday January 9, 2010Florida Men's Swim & Dive Tops IRSC, 174-102, Prepares for LSU Sunday
A solid sweep of Indian River State College kicked off the new year for the University of Florida menís and womenís swimming and diving programs Saturday at the Stephen C. OíConnell Center Natatorium. The Gators walked away with event victories in all 32 races, 16 each on the menís and womenís sides. Floridaís sixth-ranked men improved to 5-0 in dual action with a 174-102 win over IRSC, while the No. 7 UF women recorded their sixth dual meet victory of the 2009-10 season by a 168-101 margin.
A school-record performance on the three-meter diving board by senior Kara Salamone (Cooper City, Fla.) started the afternoon off right for the Gators. Salamone, who previously held the school record in the event (346.75), eclipsed her 2008-09 record with a 356.11 performance Saturday against the River. Salamone was approximately two points shy of also taking down her one-meter Florida record with a 316.58 victory in the 1M springboard.
Junior and sophomore womenís divers Monica Dodson (Franklin, Ind.) and Kaylee Doback (Brandon, Fla.) each recorded career-best performances on the diving boards as well, Doback finishing third on the one-meter board with a career-best 278.65, while Dodsonís three-meter performance was the best of her career, a second-place 326.41, which downed her previous 315.15.
In menís diving action, sophomore Anthony Lewark (Davie, Fla.) set a personal best on the three-meter springboard, racking up a score of 386.48 to top his 355.35 achieved against Indian River last season.
In swimming competition, second-semester eligible Gator Marco Loughran (London, England) made a splash in the menís 100-yard back, clocking a 48.43 NCAA provisional mark in the event to become the Gatorsí eighth individual swimmer to achieve a NCAA cut so far this season.
Junior Conor Dwyer (Winnetka, Ill.) swam the only other NCAA consolation mark for the Florida men in the 500-yard free with a 4:26.37 swim in the distance event.
Gainesville native, sophomore Lily Ramirez claimed the womenís 100-yard back in 55.54, under the NCAA B cut mark to lead the way for the womenís squad.
While all four menís and womenís 400-yard medley and 200-yard free relays dominated in the water, the menís quartet of senior Shaune Fraser (George Town, Cayman Islands), junior Brett Fraser (George Town, Cayman Islands), Dwyer and senior Roberto Gomez (Weston, Fla.) clocked a 1:21.09, the fastest time in the event for the Orange and Blue this season.
The Gatorsí Saturday annual match-up with IRSC served as the first meet of a two-meet weekend, as Florida plays host to conference rival LSU Sunday, beginning at 1 p.m. The dual with the Tigers will serve as UFís cancer awareness meet, where the first 250 fans receive a free pink swimming and diving cup. Additionally, the American Cancer Society will be on hand with education tips.
LSUís No. 18 menís and No. 21 womenís teams dropped the first four match-ups of the season to three tough Southeastern Conference teams in Tennessee, Auburn and Alabama, as well as being defeated by Florida State from the ACC. Both the LSU menís and womenís teams won duals with the University of New Orleans Nov. 13 before heading to the Cougar Fall Classic in Houston and the Christmas Diving Classic, hosted by Alabama Dec. 17-19. The Tigers additionally made a pit stop on their way to Gainesville to compete against Florida Atlantic Jan. 8.
In the LSU/Florida series, the Gators hold an undefeated advantage over the Tigers on both the menís and womenís side, 19-0 in menís action and 12-0 in womenís swimming and diving. In the last outing, Florida visited LSU in Baton Rouge Oct. 23, 2008, escaping with a 185-104 win for the women and a 166-131 victory in menís action.
Complete results from the LSU/Florida match-up, as well as a recap and highlights of swim and dive action, will be available on www.GatorZone.com Sunday following competition.
Sundayís match-up with LSU will be a tape-delayed broadcast by Sun Sports, which will air Sun., Jan. 24, at 8:30 a.m. on Cox channel 48 (Gainesville), Tues., Jan. 26, at 11 p.m. and Wed., Jan. 27, at 4:30 p.m.